Krugman’s Warning on Anti-Science GOP

NYTimes opinion writer Paul Krugman today sounds the alarm on the anti-science, anti-intellectual character of the leading contendors to be the Republican Party’s challenger to President Obama. Backing up his opinion with facts and candidate quotes, Krugman warns about the prospects of an “anti-knowledge” platform and subsequent legislative agenda. Maybe it’s time for a Million Scientist March on Washington, DC. Read Krugman here, pack your biology book for the march, and get the NYT if you want more.

Also today there’s a column to forget by Ross Douthat, apologizing for the theocratic tendencies among certain national Republican figures. I don’t know how this guy broke in to the regular line-up at the NYT. Give me William Safire’s conservatism or former Sen. Alan Simpson any time over this guy.

6 Responses to Krugman’s Warning on Anti-Science GOP

  1. C R Krieger says:

    OK, Columnist Krugman has a point.  On the other hand, this is the same Columnist Krugman who was recently fisked for trying to say that education in Texas is worse than education in Wisconsin.  At the top level it is, but race by race, Texas is ahead of Wisconsin.  Not by much, but even so, ahead.  It is just that Texas is a more racially mixed state.

    It is at the end of the article that Professor Krugman makes his pitch that we all know the right economic answers and it is just that the Republicans and The Wall Street Journal have their heads in the sand.  If we all know the answers, why are we were we are?

    As for me, I still haven’t forgiven then Senator Al Gore for lying about his book back in 1992.

    Regards  —  Cliff

  2. Andrew says:

    Cliff, can you provide a link for the Texas-Wisconsin thing? As far as 10 minutes of searching can tell, It’s not something that he’s written. I’m pretty sure I found a blog post (for clarity, a conservative blog) that either is the basis of your comment or is related to your comment. I see that the Krugman’s op-ed that seems to be the basis of this criticism ignores the fact that Texas has a much larger minority population than other states (though it was The Economist that compared it to Wisconsin). But a high school graduation rate is a high school graduation rate. No Child Left Behind wasn’t terribly sympathetic to Lowell High School with its rather large immigrant and first generation American student body. Though this all leaves out how unbelievably ignorant the Texas Board of Education is. And honestly, from that op-ed, I personally find the healthcare statistics about children to be more significant.

    We do now the right economic answers. They teach them to undergrads. As Professor Krugman mentions on his blog almost every day, the tools and knowledge to deal with this crisis exist. Why are we where we are? You’d have to ask the President and Congress why they threw out macroeconomics 101…and every other level of macroeconomics for that matter.

  3. C R Krieger says:

    Andrew is correct.  I conflated an Opinion Piece by Professor Krugman with a follow-on by The Economist

    But, at the end of the day, aside from the fact that “we are all dead”, further analysis here shows Texas does better than the national average in high school dropout rates when one looks at it by race; race contining to be a problem and an issue in this nation.  It isn’t pretty, but then it isn’t pretty across the fruited plain.  It is just that Texas has a more diverse population than many other states.

    As for Macroeconomics 101, are we saying that we need to go back to government spending such as we saw in 1942 and 1943 to dig us out of this hole?

    Regards  —  Cliff

  4. Andrew says:

    Thanks for clearing that up.

    What I’m suggesting is that we design policies based on the economic models that have worked throughout this crisis. A number of economists have been using standard models to accurately predict what will happen throughout this crisis. What concerns me is that our public policy has been divorced from those models. The research has been done. Why are we ignoring it?

    Recently the Wall Street Journal wrote an editorial (or perhaps it was an op-ed, I forget) suggesting that we should ignore economics models if they violate common sense. That is quite possibly one of the dumbest things ever written on the WSJ opinion page. We should evaluate economic models based on whether they work, not whether they violate our intuitions. That’s the difference between science and voodoo. One cures diseases and increases crop yields, the other does not.

  5. C R Krieger says:

    Can we explain what has been happening in Japan, economically, in the last two decades?  As a “Supplemental”, do you think the earthquake and nuclear reactor meltdown will allow Japan to turn the corner?

    Regards  —  Cliff